I'm trying to make Ext4 disk readable on mac OSX 10.10.5. I've already installed OSXFuse, I read on this site that I also needed to install fuse-ext2. I downloaded fuse-ext2-master.zip and unzipped it. It seems to contain source code files but no installation program. How am I supposed to use these files?


The build from source how-to is available at the git homepage of fuse-ext2. Please use the lines below though, because I had to make slight changes to get it working (e.g the libtool download source has been moved).

At least the appropriate xcode-command-line-tools and OSXFuse have to be installed.

Download the source from github and unzip the file. Then open Terminal.app and enter

cd ~/Downloads 

assuming the fuse-ext2 file was unzipped there.

First you have to download, make and install several tools (m4, autoconf, automake, libtool, e2fsprogs). Then you can build fuse-ext2. This is all done using Terminal.app.

export PATH=/opt/gnu/bin:$PATH

mkdir gnu
cd gnu

# m4
curl -O http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/m4/m4-1.4.17.tar.gz
tar -zxvf m4-1.4.17.tar.gz 
cd m4-1.4.17
./configure --prefix=/opt/gnu
make -j 16
sudo make install
cd ../

# autoconf
curl -O http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/autoconf/autoconf-2.69.tar.gz
tar -zxvf autoconf-2.69.tar.gz 
cd autoconf-2.69
./configure --prefix=/opt/gnu
sudo make install
cd ../

# automake
curl -O http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/automake/automake-1.15.tar.gz
export PATH=/opt/gnu/bin:$PATH
tar -zxvf automake-1.15.tar.gz 
cd automake-1.15
./configure --prefix=/opt/gnu
sudo make install
cd ../

# libtool
curl -O http://ftp.hawo.stw.uni-erlangen.de/gnu/libtool/libtool-2.4.6.tar.gz
tar -zxvf libtool-2.4.6.tar.gz 
cd libtool-2.4.6
./configure --prefix=/opt/gnu
sudo make install
cd ../

# e2fsprogs
curl -O https://www.kernel.org/pub/linux/kernel/people/tytso/e2fsprogs/v1.42.12/e2fsprogs-1.42.12.tar.gz
tar -zxvf e2fsprogs-1.42.12.tar.gz
cd e2fsprogs-1.42.12
./configure --prefix=/opt/gnu
sudo make install
sudo make install-libs
cd ../../

# fuse-ext2
cd fuse-ext2-master
export PATH=/opt/gnu/bin:$PATH
CFLAGS="-idirafter/opt/gnu/include -idirafter/usr/local/include/osxfuse/" LDFLAGS="-L/opt/gnu/lib -L/usr/local/lib" ./configure
sudo make install

All lines without a # have to be entered in Terminal and then executed by hitting the Enter key. You may use copy and paste.

An easier way is to install brew and use these instructions below (also in Terminal).

brew doctor #repair everything you are warned about!
brew install homebrew/dupes/m4
brew install e2fsprogs automake autoconf libtool
cd ~/Downloads/fuse-ext2-master
CFLAGS="-idirafter/$(brew --prefix e2fsprogs)/include -idirafter/usr/local/include/osxfuse" LDFLAGS="-L$(brew --prefix e2fsprogs)/lib" ./configure
sudo make install

After finishing either of the two methods all necessary files are installed (including a prefpane) and you should be able to r/w ext2/3/4.

  • Thanks for the help... but it didn't work. Here's what I got in my terminal window: make[3]: *** [install-exec-local] Error 1 make[2]: *** [install-am] Error 2 make[1]: *** [install-recursive] Error 1 make: *** [install-recursive] Error 1 Studio-Mac:fuse-ext2-master michel$ – Michel Gougeon Feb 12 '16 at 16:42
  • Studio-Mac:~ michel$ echo PATH$ PATH$ – Michel Gougeon Feb 12 '16 at 16:57
  • @MichelGougeon sorry that was the wrong one: echo $PATH is the right one – klanomath Feb 12 '16 at 17:02
  • 1
    I cannot expres how much I hate apple right now. I have to download a 2.6GB (xcode) program just to mount a filesystem and compile a driver myself? I'm on the brink of a nervous breakdown. – BdN3504 Apr 1 '17 at 12:22
  • @BdN3504 Command line tools (160 MB) are sufficient. AppleID required though. – klanomath Apr 1 '17 at 12:33

@klanomath: I had some issues working through your instructions. Brew failed for me so I went back and worked through the longer instructions. There were a few issues I had to resolve, but couldn't have been successful without your outstanding instructions! Thank you. My notes:

The link is broken for libtool. Had to use:

curl -O https://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/libtool/libtool-2.4.6.tar.gz

Also had issue with needing needing get text which addressed with:

brew reinstall gettext


brew unlink gettext && brew link gettext --force

and Finally, I actually needed full Xcode install (so big) and then running the following command:

sudo xcode-select -s /Applications/Xcode.app/Contents/Developer

I have compiled more code on a Mac than on Linux... didn't expect that... LOL

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